New Events

National

no events posted in last week

Blog Feeds

Anti-Empire

Anti-Empire

offsite link Vladimir Putin Jumps the Shark, Compares... Sun Nov 27, 2022 01:38 | Anti-Empire

offsite link How the US Could Have Prevented the Russ... Sat Nov 26, 2022 04:06 | Anti-Empire

offsite link Putin Talks Free Fertilizer for Hungry A... Fri Nov 25, 2022 14:04 | Anti-Empire

offsite link “Trusting the Plan” in the Russian W... Sun Nov 20, 2022 12:03 | Anti-Empire

offsite link Putin’s SMO Half-Assery Has Been an In... Sat Nov 19, 2022 03:50 | Anti-Empire

Anti-Empire >>

The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link About Saving Face: Some Advice to Volodymyr Zelensky Mon Nov 28, 2022 17:00 | The Saker
By Batiushka for the Saker blog It matters not how much you, gentlemen, bend down before them, You will never gain Europe?s recognition: You will always be for them, Not

offsite link The US Is a Luciferian Project Mon Nov 28, 2022 17:00 | The Saker
By Walt Garlington for the Saker blog A lot of people in the United States, millions of MAGA folks we would imagine, consider the US not just a good and

offsite link Why I Despise Douglas Murray and Other Such Propagandists (Gonzalo Lira) Sun Nov 27, 2022 20:21 | The Saker

offsite link Operation Claw-Sword: Erdogan?s big new game in Syria Sun Nov 27, 2022 18:03 | The Saker
by Pepe Escobar, posted with the author?s permission and widely cross-posted Wily Sultan is caught between his electorate, which favors a Syria invasion, and his extremely nuanced relations with Russia

offsite link Cruisin? for a Bruisin?, or, Don?t Spit in the Well Sun Nov 27, 2022 17:29 | The Saker
By Batiushka for the Saker blog ?The Ukrainian people will be liberated from their Neo-Nazi rulers, they deserve to live as friends and good neighbours and prosper alongside their Slav

The Saker >>

Lockdown Skeptics

The Daily Sceptic

offsite link Dramatic Recovery in Global Sea Ice Confounds the Net Zero Catastrophists Mon Nov 28, 2022 16:59 | Chris Morrison
When global sea ice dropped sharply 10 years ago, there was no end of stories of the coming climate catastrophe. But the more recent dramatic recovery in sea ice has gone strangely unmentioned and ignored.
The post Dramatic Recovery in Global Sea Ice Confounds the Net Zero Catastrophists appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Monkeypox to Be Renamed Mpox ?Because of Racism? Mon Nov 28, 2022 14:55 | Will Jones
Monkeypox is to be rebranded as ?mpox? after global health experts said the name had racist connotations and could lead to stigmatisation.
The post Monkeypox to Be Renamed Mpox ‘Because of Racism’ appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Pfizer CEO Found to Have Misled the Public Over Child Covid Vaccination by Pharmaceutical Watchdog Mon Nov 28, 2022 09:00 | Will Jones
Pfizer?s CEO Dr Albert Bourla has been rapped by the UK?s pharmaceutical watchdog for making misleading statements about vaccinating children by saying they are at risk from Covid and will benefit from vaccination.
The post Pfizer CEO Found to Have Misled the Public Over Child Covid Vaccination by Pharmaceutical Watchdog appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Retired French Ambassador Skewers the ?Rules-Based International Order? Mon Nov 28, 2022 07:00 | Noah Carl
In an unusually frank outburst, the former French Ambassador to the US stated, "When the Americans want to do whatever they want, including when it?s against international law, as they define it, they do it."
The post Retired French Ambassador Skewers the ?Rules-Based International Order? appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link News Round-Up Mon Nov 28, 2022 01:58 | Will Jones
A summary of the most interesting stories in the past 24 hours that challenge the prevailing orthodoxy about the virus and the vaccines, the ?climate emergency? and the supposed moral defects of Western civilisation.
The post News Round-Up appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

Lockdown Skeptics >>

Voltaire Network
Voltaire, international edition

offsite link Russia reverts to US biological military program abroad Mon Nov 28, 2022 14:17 | en

offsite link Zelensky trapped by Moscow and Washington, by Thierry Meyssan Tue Nov 22, 2022 07:02 | en

offsite link "Voltaire, International Newsletter" n°15 Sun Nov 20, 2022 14:01 | en

offsite link ?Voltaire, International Newsletter? n°14 Thu Nov 17, 2022 10:39 | en

offsite link Is the conflict in Ukraine a civil war? Tue Nov 15, 2022 17:44 | en

Voltaire Network >>

Postman Pat says ‘stuff your pay cut”

category national | worker & community struggles and protests | feature author Monday September 10, 2007 08:45author by Postman Pat - WSM Report this post to the editors

Interview with striking postal worker

featured image
Postal van driven by manager (image courtesy of Indymedia UK)

From June to mid-August, postal workers in the North and in Britain were taking industrial action. Management are on the offensive, and the action was to protect existing conditions.

In a display of cross-border common purpose An Post bosses are also having a go, with conditions under attack as a prelude to selling off parts of the service to private companies. So, An Post workers have a special interest in how the Communications Workers Union dispute progresses

On 10th August, Royal Mail agreed to talk, and the CWU suspended strike action pending the outcome of negotiations. A Work-to-Rule continues, and will continue to cause disruption to the post. If the talks don’t deliver for the workers, strike action will have to be resumed and escalated. Anything less will be seen as weakness by the bosses and will encourage them to seek even more concessions from staff.

One Royal Mail worker gives her views:
The strike occurred in to protect working conditions, can you describe the changes that were threatened?

Early in 2007, Royal Mail unveiled its Business Plan, which included unpopular later starting times, ‘Team-Working’, which means covering for staff on holiday or off sick with unpaid overtime, ‘Summer Lapsing’ which means five staff covering six duties during the summer months (and which will no doubt lead to it being an all year round exercise, thereby losing another 40,000 jobs), closing the pension scheme to new employees, (a leaked document has shown there are insufficient funds in the pension plan due to Royal Mail deciding to withhold payments for a number of years) and delivering leaflets for no extra payment.

Royal Mail say that these measures and more must be agreed to before any pay rise will be granted. An offer of 2.5% on basic pay equates to Ł8 per week, but staff will lose Ł12.50 per week by agreeing to later starting times. The offer is a pay cut however it is viewed.

What was the reaction of the workers?

In June, the membership delivered an overwhelming decision in favour of strike action, the significance of which Royal Mail attempted to play down. However the first strikes have seen massive support with very few scabs turning into work. After the first strike, Royal Mail claimed 60% of staff worked normally, but this was proved to be false.

In a desperate attempt to undermine the strike, a manager repeatedly drove a Royal Mail minibus with blacked out windows through a picket line to give the impression of people wanting to work whenever a camera from the local media turned up.

Since the strikes began, more and more delivery office staff have chosen not to perform unpaid overtime before official start times and are refusing to use their own cars to transport themselves and their mail to their deliveries. Both practices are responsible for job losses. Managers in offices where this is taking place have been unable to cope with demand for vans and have been delivering mail which has been left or brought back by staff unable to complete delivery in the appointed time span. Workers have become sick and tired of being bullied by power-tripping managers manner and are fighting back the best way they can.

What are the usual relations between staff and employers?

When Tony Blair appointed Allan Leighton as Chairman of Royal Mail in March 2002, he was already on the boards of nine other companies, had sold Asda to the anti-union Wal-Mart supermarket chain and was in the process of the transforming Leeds United Football Club from Champions League contenders to relegation certainties and ultimate bankruptcy. Allegedly he receives a basic salary of a Ł800,000 per year.

Leighton is fond of referring to the employees of the companies he has anything to do with as “our people”, an annoying habit which along with referring to recipients of his many propaganda letters by their first name and signing off with ‘Regards, Allan’, he imagines gives him a ‘matey’ persona.

He introduced to Royal Mail the idea of ‘huddles’, an innovation he brought with him from Asda. Embarrassed managers would call together a few workers to discuss issues around the job. Staff quickly dubbed these meetings ‘muddles’ when it became clear managers had little idea of the duties they were supposed to be in charge of and simply refused to participate in them.

Obviously Leighton had not been used to dealing with a large, highly unionised workforce made militant by many years of bullying management and a series of CWU General Secretaries who seemed almost as out of touch with the workers as Leighton himself. In 2003, the CWU lost a ballot on pay by a mere 1,600 votes and Leighton, Crozier and just about every manager under them thought the result gave them licence to impose ‘team-working’ and four hour delivery spans.

The culture of bullying and harassment from managers increased, leading to unofficial industrial action in many large towns and cities which forced Royal Mail to the negotiating table. Leighton gave up referring to ‘activists’ in his letters to staff as it was obvious the ‘activists’ made up a sizeable majority of the workforce and his ‘divide and conquer’ tactics had failed.

What are the CWU like as a union?

The biggest fear now is that of being let down by the leadership of the Communications Workers Union. This is always a possibility while those at the top of the CWU are enthralled by the notion of a link with the Labour Party. If ten years of Labour looking after the interests of big business and trampling on the working class have taught them nothing, perhaps the near total silence from the party they help fund on this latest battle might.

Related Link: http://www.wsm.ie
author by Susan Isabella Sheehan-Repasky - Flicker Light Studiopublication date Thu Sep 13, 2007 00:18author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Hi JP. You have valid points, however I suggest that you read the book "Confessions Of An Economic Hitman". These EHM are not naive. They are trained "assassins" in the EVERY sense of the word.

 
© 2001-2022 Independent Media Centre Ireland. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by Independent Media Centre Ireland. Disclaimer | Privacy